DEPARTMENT OF GEORGIA
VETERANS OF FOREIGN WARS OF THE UNITED STATES
2008 - 2009 Series - General Order No. 2 December 2008
TO ALL POST AND DISTRICTS WITHIN THE JURISDICTION OF THE
DEPARTMENT OF GEORGIA
1. The following Department changes/appointments are hereby announced:
6 District Commander:
John E. Bogardus, Jr., 6396 Priscilla Court, Morrow, Georgia
30260-2122 (H) 770-960-6270 (Cell) 404-433-8312
Andrew “Gene” Lastinger, 981 Mill Pond Rd., Moultrie, GA
31768 (H) 229-941-2911 (Cell) 229-873-1235 (E-mail)
2. Members in Good Standing: A member who has paid his/her current dues to
December 31 is in good standing, and ceases to be in good standing on January
1st immediately following the year for which his/her dues were paid and shall
remain in such status until his/her dues are paid for the current membership year.
A member not in good standing shall forfeit all membership rights (including any
canteen privileges), shall not attend meetings or conventions and shall not
participate in Post, District, Department or National functions of any type in
anyway. Additionally, any elective officer whose membership is not in good
standing by reason of failure to pay current dues to December 31 shall forfeit
eligibility to hold office and said office shall be held to be vacated effective
January 1, 2009. Every effort should be made to renew the membership of
continuous members and also sign up new and reinstated members prior to
January 1, 2009.
3. Tax Returns: An annual income tax return (Form 990 or 990-N) is required of
each Post exempt from tax under Section 501(c) of the Code. A Form 990 is
submitted if gross receipts are $25,000 or more; less than $25,000 MUST submit
a 990-N. The 990-N may ONLY be submitted on-line (see other requirements
below regarding the Form 990-N.
Gross receipts include income from all sources, including membership dues,
liquor or restaurant receipts, etc. Some of this may be “unrelated business
income,” in which case filing of Form 990-T may be required.
This return must be filed on or before the 15th day of the fifth month after the end
of the Department’s accounting period. Requests for extension of time to file may
be made by submitting Form 2758, Application for Extension of Time to File.
If a Post fails to file the return on or before the due date, or the extended due date,
a penalty of $10 for each day the return is late (not to exceed $5,000) is imposed
unless it can be shown that the failure to file was due to reasonable cause.
All units are alerted to report activities of IRS District Offices in conducting
unannounced investigations and/or surveillance of Posts to determine if non-
members are being served or using VFW facilities.
New Electronic Filing Requirements for Small Tax-Exempt Organizations -
Annual Electronic Notice - e-Postcard (Form 990-N):
Small tax-exempt organizations, whose gross receipts are normally $25,000 or
less, are not required to file Form 990 or Form 990-EZ. Beginning in 2008, small
tax-exempt organizations that previously were not required to file returns may be
required to file an annual electronic notice, Form 990-N, Electronic Notice
(e-Postcard) for Tax-Exempt Organizations not Required To File Form 990 or
990-EZ. This filing requirement applies to tax periods beginning after December
GET YOUR EIN NOW. The Employer Identification Number (EIN) is in this
case basically a Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN) serving the same purpose
for the organization that your Social Security Number serves for you with the IRS.
Every post VFW and LAVFW and each district VFW and LAVFW should apply
now for an Employer Identification Number (EIN) – this is not the GEN.
a. APPLY BY EIN Toll-Free Telephone Service
Taxpayers can obtain an EIN immediately by calling the Business &
Specialty Tax Line at (800) 829-4933. The hours of operation are 7:00
a.m. - 10:00 p.m. local time, Monday through Friday. An assistor takes the
information, assigns the EIN, and provides the number to an authorized
individual over the telephone.
b. APPLY BY FAX
Taxpayers can FAX the completed Form SS-4 application to their state
FAX number (see Where to File - Business Forms and Filing
Addresses), after ensuring that the Form SS-4 contains all of the required
information. If it is determined that the entity needs a new EIN, one will be
assigned using the appropriate procedures for the entity type. If the
taxpayer's fax number is provided, a fax will be sent back with the EIN
within four (4) business days.
APPLY BY MAIL
The processing timeframe for an EIN application received by mail is four weeks.
Ensure that the Form SS-4 contains all of the required information. If it is
determined that the entity needs a new EIN, one will be assigned using the
appropriate procedures for the entity type and mailed to the taxpayer.
NOTE: Posts should ensure that they are listed on the “subordinate unit”
listing that the Department Headquarters submits to the Internal Revenue
Service each year. Contact Judy at Department Headquarters.
4. By-Laws and Ritual: All officers should obtain current copies of the National
By-Laws, Manual of Procedure and Ritual. Copies of the 2009 revised edition of
the Congressional Charter, By-Laws, Manual of Procedure and Ritual are
available through the VFW Emblem and Supply Department. The 2009 revised
edition reflects the amendments adopted by the 109th National Convention which
became effective on September 20, 2008.
5. On-line Membership Renewal: As a participating Direct Dues Department, we
would like to take this opportunity to inform you of the availability of your Post’s
membership to renew their annual dues payment on-line.
The procedure is simple and secure. Begin by accessing the VFW Home page at
www.vfw.org under MEMBERSHIP, click E-Membership Tools and then click
“Renew Annual Membership Dues or Pay Life Membership Fee on Line”.
The on-line renewal is quick, easy and secure. The member, after entering their
personal information, has the opportunity to choose annual or Life Membership
and then complete the process by credit card.
6. National Convention Delegate Registration: Paragraph (d), Section 222 of the
National Congressional Charter and By-Laws provides “each” Post shall register,
in advance, at least one delegate to the National Convention by the payment of a
fee in the amount of ten ($10.00). Posts that did not pay the advance
registration fee for the 109th National Convention held in Orlando, Florida
are reminded that they are delinquent and in arrears. Any such delinquent
Post is directed to pay the late registration fee which is $12.00 forthwith. Post
check should be forwarded to VFW National Headquarters immediately.
7. Quartermaster Bond: All Post and District Commanders are reminded to have
their Quartermaster sufficiently bonded. The bonding form was mailed to all Post
Quartermasters in late July. Previous bonds expired August 31, 2008. Post that
have their Quartermaster bonded through someone else other than National must
notify the Department by sending proof of bonding. In return, it will be credited
to the Post Community Activity Report.
8. Trustees Report of Audit: Attention of Post Commander is directed to Section
218 Manual of Procedure, Duty of Trustees. Trustees report of Audit must be
completed by the Trustees in detail, at the close of each quarter. Commanders
are reminded that all funds are to be under the custody and control of the Post
Quartermaster. Post funds, such as the Canteen Manager, Bingo Chairman or
Committee Chairmen are responsible to the Post Quartermaster to maintain
accurate records and accounts and should be properly bonded. Post Trustees are
to ensure that the financial records of these special funds are also audited in the
same manner as the other accounts of the Post Quartermaster.
9. Post Dues Reserve: Attention is directed to Section 218, Manual of Procedure,
which mandates Post Quartermasters to maintain a dues reserve fund to which
shall be credited not less than on-half of the Post’s part of the current year’s
(2009) dues paid by each member prior to July 1, 2009, including Life
Membership per capita taxes received from the National Organization. This does
not apply to dues paid by the Post. No Post Quartermaster shall disburse, nor shall
an obligation be incurred against this fund until after July 1, 2009, at which time it
shall be transferred to the Post General Fund and be available for expenditure.
10. VFW Cap: Attention of Commanders at all levels is directed to action of the
National Council of Administration prohibiting the wearing of VFW sport caps
and/or western style caps at VFW meeting in place of the regulation cap of the
VFW official uniform as set forth in Section 803 of the National By-Laws and
Manual of Procedure and implemented in General Rule 13 of the Ritual of the
Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U. S. This prohibition is in accordance with
The General Rules of the Ritual which provide only for the wear of the official
VFW cap at VFW meetings. It also should be noted that Rule 13 of the General
Rules of the Ritual of the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U. S. read, in part:
“…official caps shall not be worn during luncheons, banquets, or other meals…”
(Underlining added for emphasis)
11. Alcoholic Beverages: Attention of Post Commanders is directed to the
Commander-in-Chief’s decision in response to questions raised concerning
alcoholic beverages in the Post meeting room during the Post meeting as set forth
It is held to be objectionable and contrary to accepted rules of order and proper
decorum implicit in the ritual of the VFW to permit alcoholic beverages in the
Post meeting room during the Post meeting. Accordingly, the presence,
dispensation and/or consumption of alcoholic beverages in the Post meeting room
during the Post meeting is completely unacceptable and any such practice known
to exist shall be terminated.
12. Relief Fund: Post Quartermasters are reminded to maintain a relief fund, which
shall be credited with the net proceeds of all sales of Buddy Poppies and such
other monies as may be solicited or donated for veteran’s relief purposes.
Expenditures from the relief fund shall only be made for the purposes outlined in
Section 704 of the Manual of Procedure.
13. Admission Fees and Dues: A $1.00 new member admission fee is to be
collected by Posts for all new members (including new Life Members) recruited
July 1, 2008 to June 30, 2009. DO NOT SEND THE NEW MEMBER FEE TO
DEPARTMENT HEADQUARTERS MONTHLY. Department Headquarters
will bill all Posts for the new member admission fee in May 2009 for new
members recruited July 1, 2008 – April 30, 2009 and again in July 2009 for new
members recruited May 1, 2009 – June 30, 2009.
14. Outstanding Checks: If you receive a check from Department Headquarters,
please deposit it immediately. Your immediate attention in this matter will be
15. Officers Name and Address Changes: Changes in names, addresses and
telephone numbers of Post, District and Department Officers must be reported
immediately to National and Department Headquarters.
16. Reporting of Address Changes/Deceased Members: Post Quartermasters must
report all member’s changes directly to VFW National Headquarters. This
is important to ensure that members receive their dues notices, other VFW mail
and to preclude unnecessary return postage fees by Department and National
Headquarters. Post Quartermasters are encourage to report members address
changes and deceased members via Internet to National. Website is
www.vfw.org - Click on Membership, click on E-Membership Tools. If you have
no access to Internet then please report changes promptly by mailing Part 3, Status
Change, of the Renewal Form directly to VFW National Headquarters.
ALSO PLEASE CONTINUE TO REPORT DECEASED MEMBERS TO
DEPARTMENT HEADQUARTERS SO THAT THEY CAN BE PUBLISHED
UNDER TAPS IN THE GEORGIA VFW NEWS. Reporting to Department
Headquarters can be by telephone, e-mail, fax or letter.
17. District Meeting Attendance: Section 218 of the National By-Laws and Manual
of Procedure, Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States, states in part: “He”
(Post Commander) or his representative, shall attend all regularly called District
Convention or District Meetings. Failure without just cause to perform this duty
shall result in removal from office. This and all other provisions of the National
By-Laws and Manual of Procedure will be enforced.
18. Council of Administration Attendance: The District Commander is an
“ex-officio” member of the Council of Administration and is installed into that
office. The District Commander is a state officer and attendance is not optional.
Section 418 specifically stipulates that: “A District Commander who absents
himself without valid excuse for two (2) consecutive meetings of the Department
Council of Administration may be removed from office by the Department
Council of Administration.
19. Buddy Poppy: Please order your poppies early. National must have at least a
three to four week notice before your campaign to insure delivery. Cost is $105.00
per 1,000, minimum order 500. All other Poppy supplies must be purchased
through National VFW Emblem and Supply Department. The Department of
Georgia has a goal set by the National Commander-in-Chief for the 2008-2009
VFW Administrative Year of ten Buddy Poppies per member. Ensure your Post
and District is not left behind in this effort.
20. Dues Notice: Dues Renewal Notice is scheduled for mailing to all unpaid
members on or about December 15, 2008 and February 15, 2009. Post
membership Teams should personally contact these members to encourage them
to pay their dues by sending payment in envelope provided or paying the Post
21. Inspections: A thorough program of Post inspection is necessary to ensure
compliance with National and Department By-Laws and directives. Deputy
Inspectors (each District Commanders) shall make every effort to inspect every
Post under their jurisdiction on an annual basis and correct such discrepancies as
may be disclosed.
22. Program Supporting: All are asked to support and participate in both National
and Department fund raising projects. Monies from these programs are used to
help support the necessary programs offered by the VFW.
23. Partners in Patriotism Sustainer Program: The development Department has
developed the Partners in Patriotism Sustainer Program that will benefit National
and Department programs support by reducing mailing costs, provide sustainable,
predictable annual income and reduce the mail in the individual member’s
mailbox. The new program permits VFW members to opt for a monthly,
quarterly, annual donation to VFW Programs on/about the 19th day of each month.
All members are encouraged to use this option. Information can be obtained from
the Department Headquarters.
24. Meetings: Mid-Winter Meeting - February 13 - 15, 2009
Awards Banquet, Saturday
State Convention - June 11- 14, 2009
25. Department Holiday Closings: December 24 – 26, 2008; and January 1-2, 2009.
26. Membership Termination: The following results of Termination of
Membership are announced for failure to submit proof of eligibility to the
Robert V. Caputi, VFW Post 2872
Elroy S. Emanuel, VFW Post 7404
David C. Roberts, VFW Post 8452
27. Disciplinary Actions: The following results are announced of Disciplinary
Actions taken by the Department Commander for violations of various sections of
Article IX of the National By-Laws after all appeals have been exhausted by the
Lonnie L. Harnage, VFW Post 5978
Penalty imposed: Termination of Membership
28. General Order Information: To be read at a regular meeting and filed. It has
come to our attention while visiting Posts throughout the State, that some Post
Commanders are not reading the General Order from Department Headquarters at
their meetings. The information is for all members and it is the responsibility of
the Commander to insure that it is relayed to the membership.
BY ORDER OF
H. DWAYNE EPPS
Albert R. Spears